Dear Design

by Daniel Wert

2 min readSep 12, 2023

Our Design community has been the backdrop to much of my life — growing up, your portfolios covered our coffee table, your business cards spun on our rolodex-filled shelves, and to this day, your stories are the soundtrack to every dinner conversation. Connecting with all of you since joining Wert&Co., has felt like a reunion — a chance to finally meet all the people whose names I’ve heard so often over the years.

Although we at Wert&Co. think of our Design community as one giant family, I only have one set of parents. I am honored to ensure the institution Jeff & Judy built (alongside all of you) continues to evolve and thrive. My purpose in joining Wert&Co. is not to replace my parents but to empower them. Like any team, and family, we are greater than the sum of our parts, and we are all here to stay.

Looking forward, we wanted to share a few of our thoughts about the future:

Although Wert&Co’s reputation is rightfully synonymous with leadership recruiting and executive search, our definition of a “leader” is broader than most — inclusive of management roles but certainly not mutually exclusive to them. Whether you are a Founding Designer, Principal, Director, CDO, Investor, or Board Member — we are here to support you throughout your career and no matter what kind of leader you aspire to be.

When recruiting is done right, its spirit bends towards coaching. Our philosophy around recruiting remains unchanged — we aim to be a friend and trusted thought partner throughout your journey, both professionally and personally.

Scale will never be a goal for Wert&Co. On the contrary, our compass is set toward quality — of opportunity, of person, of life, and in every conversation. Too many recruiting organizations are handcuffed by a culture of quotas and a need for constant “growth.” We will never prioritize quantity over quality simply because we don’t have to.

Design is a beautifully diverse and inclusive discipline. Whether you are designing products, brands, homes, experiences, business plans, systems, teams, or people’s career — there are many ways to be a Designer.

This next generation of companies will invest in Design from the jump. If the past 28 years of Wert&Co. have been about uplifting Design to the top of every business, the next few decades will also be about ensuring Design has a meaningful role at every new beginning.

Recruiting and search are integral parts of this 0–1 effort, but they are not the only tools on our belt. Although it’s too soon to publicize all of our plans, we are excited to diversify our suite of services to better serve our fellow designers & entrepreneurs.

Stay tuned!

— Dw




The Design community’s most trusted search firm, dedicated to building global businesses with creative leadership.